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Northeast Delta HSA collaborates with AKA chapter for Earth Day, plants tree to symbolize RISE Center

Monroe, LA – Northeast Delta Human Services Authority (NEDHSA) and the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Zeta Phi Omega Chapter (AKA) collaborated to celebrate Earth Day, a reminder of the importance of environmental conservation and sustainability. NEDHSA and the AKAs celebrated Earth Day by planting a tree at NEDHSA’s Reaching Independence Through Support & Education (RISE) Pregnant Women with Children Treatment Center, located at 4781 South Grand Ave. Monroe, La. 71202.

NEDHSA’s Executive Director, Dr. Monteic A. Sizer said, “This collaboration was more than about a state agency and a civic and social group working together; it is about the representation of what our RISE Center is.”

“Planting seeds, establishing roots, and nurturing growth is not just a symbolic gesture. It’s a reflection of the RISE Center’s mission for the women and children it serves,” Dr. Sizer said. “When these women enter the facility and find solace under the shade of this tree, it will serve as a powerful symbol of solidarity and support. They will feel the strength of our community, standing with them, believing in their resilience and growth.”

This collaborative project resembles the work NEDHSA has been doing for 10 years through initiatives such as buddy benches. Buddy benches are a way for students to signal to others that they feel lonely and isolated and need a friend to play with or someone to talk to. The tree project will also be followed by a therapeutic bench so that the women can do the same at the RISE Center.

For the AKAs, enhancing the environment is not just a one-time effort. It’s a long-term commitment to impact society. With this vision, the AKAs aim to plant nearly 20,000 trees in 2024. Trees are not just a symbol of strength, growth, and calmness, but they also conserve water, combat climate change, and cool environments.

AKA Zeta Phi Omega Chapter President Deborah Jefferson said, “By planting trees, we plant the foundation for generations to come.”

“Under our organization’s initiative, we can leave a lasting impact on our community in its beautification,” Deborah said.

The tree was planted on Monday, April 22, 2024 at 4781 South Grand Ave. Monroe, La. 71202. The RISE CENTER will be open for services for pregnant women with children in Early 2025. After the opening the AKAs will install the therapeutic bench to further the project and collaboration.

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For more information, contact DeRon Talley at (318) 237-9973 or email deron.talley@la.gov.

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Picture of Dr. Monteic A. Sizer
Dr. Monteic A. Sizer

Dr. Monteic A. Sizer serves as Executive Director of Northeast Delta Human Services Authority (Northeast Delta HSA). He joined the organization in May 2013 as its first Executive Director. He is uniquely qualified to advocate on behalf of citizens located in the twelve Northeast Delta HSA parishes he represents because he exemplifies how people can meet their greatest human potential based on accountability, integrity and a willingness to engage in their own lives.

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